CUMBRIAN businesses can look forward to an expanded range of cost-free support programmes, courtesy of the Cumbrian Local Enterprise Partnership (CLEP).

CLEP’s team of expert advisers is offering a number of new programmes aimed at Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) - at no charge to participants - to add to the range already on offer.

CLEP business growth manager Lynsey Parke said: “Now more than ever, it’s imperative that we support our businesses across the county.

“Our small businesses need tangible and relevant help and these programmes are part of a series that address specific day to day challenges and opportunities that our business leaders tell us they need to manage. We look forward to continuing to support our local businesses as they work towards a sustainable recovery.”

The programmes include:

Peer Networks - a national peer-to-peer action learning programme for SME leaders that want to grow and develop their organisations for future success.

Help to Grow: Management - a practical management training programme, delivered locally by Lancaster University in collaboration with industry.

Workplace Wellbeing - Are you looking to start the New Year with the right approach to wellbeing for you and your team? This workshop on Workplace Wellbeing is a session full of practical tips to support your wellbeing from learning how to recognise and manage stress to ensuring self-care is part of your daily routine.

Net Zero – CLEP’s Journey to Net Zero Programme will be starting in a few weeks. If you’re an SME at an early stage on the path to net zero emissions, this six week programme will guide you through what the target means for your business and how to prioritise action.

Participants will receive guided support to help to build a strategic plan to cut carbon footprint, reduce costs, minimise risk and capitalise on the many opportunities in the net zero world.

Attract, Engage and Retain Power – This programme will also be starting in a few weeks. Aimed at businesses with five or more employees, the short three hour session will provide support and guidance for business leaders seeking to strengthen their recruitment and retention strategies.